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Morris discussing Goold Park Drive bridge replacement

Project not in the immediate future

MORRIS – The city of Morris is in preliminary talks to replace the Goold Park Drive bridge over the east fork of Nettle Creek.

Mayor Richard Kopczick said the bridge, built in 1929, was discussed Thursday evening in a Morris Street and Alley Committee meeting.

“There’s a number of reasons we are discussing it,” Kopczick said Friday.

The outdated bridge holds back a lot of water during floods and given how old it is, it’s not in the best shape. Additionally, Kopczick said the curve of the roadway is not the safest.

The committee discussed the possibility of partnering with Grundy County on the project, similar to the re-decking of the Ottawa Avenue bridge that the two governmental entities agreed on in 2009. In that deal, 80 percent of costs were covered by federal funds while Morris and Grundy County each paid 10 percent.

Kopczick said the next step is to arrange a meeting with Grundy County Engineer Craig Cassem to see if it’s feasible. The project is likely a few years down the road, as it would need several permits in addition to an updated design.

The city also discussed straightening out the roadway to make it safer for motorists. That portion of the project would be strictly up to the city to fund.

“But it would still be a big savings if we can team with the county on the bridge itself,” Kopczick said.

In other news, the Morris Building and Grounds Committee discussed Thursday evening the sound system in the Morris Municipal Services Facility’s council chambers.

Alderman Don Matteson has reached out in recent months to sound companies about the troublesome system. Ron Schaap, a system sales representative with Commercial Electronic Systems of Joliet, met Jan. 5 with the committee.

The cost for an upgraded system is estimated at $3,380, Kopczick said. He noted Alderman Randy Larson expressed a desire to have the sound system installed but would like the city to get its money back if council or the audience isn’t happy with it.

Kopczick said he’s confident the company will do a nice job. It is set to be discussed Feb. 16.

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